Longtime Democratic Congressman and state political leader Steny Hamilton Hoyer was awarded by the Maryland Democratic Party at their June 23 gala for decades of service and enormous contributions to not just his congressional district, but the entire state. 

Hoyer was first drawn to politics when he met President John F. Kennedy while enrolled at the University of Maryland. Hoyer was elected to the State Senate in 1966, and elected by his peers as Senate President in the late 1970s. 

After Congresswoman Gladys Noon Spellman (D) fell into a coma in 1980, Hoyer won the congressional special elections to represent Maryland’s 5th Congressional District. He has been serving in Congress ever since, including as the Majority Leader and Minority Whip under Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D). In the mid-1960s, both he and Pelosi interned on Capitol Hill together for Sen. Daniel Brewster. 

Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries attended the gala and offered his respects for someone who has been a mentor for him in D.C. 

“Steny Hoyer is a good man, a hard-working man, a family man, a well-educated man, a community man, a visionary man, a soon-to-be-newlywed man,” he said. “And certainly, above all else, a mighty, mighty, mighty Maryland man who has dedicated his life to improving the health, the safety, the economic well-being of the people of this great state.”

“I like politics because of what we can do, not to just be, but do,” said Hoyer. “To make a difference in people’s lives. To make it better. To give it a greater quality. To respect every individual.”

A tweet from Hoyer’s Twitter account read, “Thank you to Chairwoman Yvette Lewis, [Maryland Dems], [Hakeem Jeffries], and the entire Maryland delegation for such a special night.”

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